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Tit bits from the city of Chicago!

Mayor Emanuel Announces Process To Appoint Fourth Ward Alderman For City Council

Mayor Rahm Emanuel has announced a public process to identify a potential replacement for Alderman Will Burns to serve and represent the residents of Chicago’s 4th ward.

As has been done in the past to select a replacement for open aldermanic seats, any resident of the ward will be able to apply through an open and comprehensive process, and a committee of local leaders will help determine the finalists.

Starting today, Friday, February 26, residents of the 4th ward who are interested in applying for the vacancy can submit an application online by visiting Applications will be accepted through Friday, March 4 at 5 pm.

Mayor Emanuel has also appointed a committee with community representation to review the applications submitted, as well as interview candidates by phone or in person, if necessary. They will then deliberate and recommend three suitable candidates to the Mayor.

The members of the committee are:

Rev. Dr. Richard L. Tolliver
Rev. Dr. Richard L. Tolliver is a Kenwood resident and has been the pastor of St. Edmund’s Episcopal Church since 1989. In November 1990, he founded the St. Edmund’s Redevelopment Corporation (SERC), a not-for-profit community development corporation devoted to revitalizing the housing stock of Washington Park, the neighborhood in which the church is located. He currently serves a member of the Commission on Chicago Landmarks as well as the Low Income Housing Trust Fund.

Bonnie Sanchez-Carlson
For 26 years, Bonnie Sanchez-Carlson has worked for the Near South Planning Board, which plans, guides and encourages a program of development for the area while creating, supporting and promoting a thriving business district. In 2003, she became the first Hispanic woman to serve as its Executive Director. She is a member of the Lambda Alpha Ely Chapter Honorary Society for the Advancement of Land Economics and serves on the Illinois Comptroller’s Hispanic Advisory Board. She has been a charter member of the Rotary Club of Chicago Near South for the past 13 years and serves as an Assistant District Governor.

Paula Wolff
Paula Wolff is Director of the Illinois Justice Project, a civic organization developing and implementing policy initiatives and programs to reform the criminal justice system by addressing youth trauma and reducing youth and adult violence, crime and incarceration. Previously, she served as Senior Executive at Chicago Metropolis 2020 and Metropolis Strategies, where she led the Justice and Violence Group, which was the predecessor to the Illinois Justice Project. She serves on numerous boards, including the University of Chicago, the University of Chicago Medical Center, the Joyce Foundation, and Ariel Investment. She has also chaired the Illinois Tollway and the City Colleges of Chicago Board.
Bill Lowry
William A. “Bill” Lowry is a Kenwood resident and career attorney serving as Managing Shareholder for Nyhan, Bambrick, Kinzie, & Lowry, PC. He specializes in the areas of Workers’ Compensation defense and employer liability, and has been licensed as an attorney since 1988 by the Northern District of Illinois and the State of Illinois. He is a member of the American Bar Association, the Chicago and Cook County Bar Associations and the Economic Club of Chicago. Additionally, he serves on the Board of Governors of Loyola University Chicago School of Law and on the Board of Trustees of Lake Forest College. Lowry also serves as Vice-Chair of the Illinois Capital Development Board.

Alderman Michelle Harris
Alderman Michelle Harris serves as Chairman of the Chicago City Council Committee on Rules, Committees and Ethics. She has a long-standing history of community involvement, stemming from the influence of her parents, who were stewards of their neighborhood. She has been Alderman of the 8th ward since December of 2006. Prior to that, she served in a variety of capacities serving the public. From Chief of Staff to an Alderman, to Streets and Sanitation Ward Superintendent to the Cook County Board of Commissioners, Harris has found success employing her strong community roots, and excellent work ethic.
Reverend Tolliver will serve as Chair of the committee.
Mayor Emanuel will announce the selected candidate by April 29, 2016. The new Alderman is expected to be sworn in at the May 18 City Council meeting. Because at least 28 months will remain in the aldermanic term when the vacancy occurrs, a special election for the seat will be held in February 2017.


Streets & Sanitation – Garbage Fee Roll Out

The City passed an ordinance as part of the 2016 Budget that implements a $9.50 per month per dwelling unit garbage fee for residential properties currently receiving City-provided garbage service, effective January 1, 2016.

Beginning this April, Chicago residences that receive garbage collection services provided by the Department of Streets and Sanitation will begin paying a garbage service fee of $9.50 per month per dwelling unit. The fee will pay for a portion of the costs associated with weekly garbage collection provided to residences.

Roughly half of Chicago households (buildings with 5 dwelling units or more) already pay for garbage collection service from a private provider.  This garbage fee impacts the other half of Chicago households (buildings with 4 dwelling units or less), receiving garbage pickup from the City.  Therefore, residents living in buildings with five or more units will continue to pay for private garbage collection service, and this fee will not apply to them.

To allow for one bill and one payment for City-provided services, the garbage fee will appear on a new, unified utility bill – starting in April—that reflects charges for water and sewer services provided by the Department of Water Management and garbage services provided by the Department of Streets and Sanitation.  This unified bill allows residents to receive one bill and pay all costs in one payment each billing cycle, eliminating multiple payments or separate billing cycles.

This unified City-provided utility bill will continue to follow the current water billing cycle.  Meaning, if you have a water meter account, you will continue to be billed every 2 months, and if you do not have a water meter (a non-metered account), you will continue to be billed every 6 months.

The new, unified utility bill will start in April 2016, and it will include catch up charges for the garbage service provided since January 2016 along with current charges for water, sewer, and garbage services.

Please note that the City is waiving all late payment penalties for the garbage fee portion of the unified utility bill in 2016.  This will help ease the transition to the unified utility bill and allow you to space out your catch up garbage fee charges throughout 2016. 

Additionally, there are multiple payment plan options available for residents to pay their unified utility bills.  You may apply for a payment plan option at any Department of Finance Payment Center or by calling Utility Billing Customer Service at 312-744-4426.

There is also a senior discount for the garbage fee that is different than the senior sewer exemption.  Seniors who receive the Cook County Assessor’s Senior Freeze Exemption as part of their property tax bill are eligible for a discounted garbage fee.  Eligible seniors will receive a 50 percent discount on the garbage fee or $4.75 per month per unit.

Lastly, to help ensure residents receive an accurate garbage bill, a simple self-certification process will be available starting in April 2016. Residents may check the number of dwelling units for their property and update that information if required.


Source:Alderman Will Burns .

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